The Doctor’s Room will examine between four and six NBA injuries to prominent players on a weekly basis, detailing their specific ailments, prognosis, and expected return dates. Here’s last week’s edition.
In this week’s edition, Kyrie Irving aggravated his shoulder and won’t return this season. He will be getting arthroscopic surgery.
Karl-Anthony Towns has a fracture on his left wrist that threatens to end his season. Klay Thompson won’t return this year, while Elfrid Payton is nursing a short-term ankle issue.
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NBA Injuries Update – Kyrie Irving’s shoulder betrays him
Ailment: Right shoulder impingement
Diagnosed: Initially on November 13, out since November 14 and returned on January 12, injured his knee on February 1. Aggravated shoulder issue this week
Expected return: Out for the season
Fantasy benefactors: Caris LeVert, Spencer Dinwiddie, Joe Harris, Taurean Smith
The week started off on the wrong foot for Kyrie Irving and the Brooklyn Nets. The point guard didn’t practice on Tuesday after aggravating the shoulder issue that forced him to miss 26 games in the season. On Thursday, Shams Charania reported that he was going to undergo a procedure, remarks that were later confirmed by general manager Sean Marks. “Out indefinitely” morphed into “out for the season” quicker than you would have imagined.
In his initial season with the Nets, Kyrie Irving had averages of 27.4 PPG, 2.8 3PM, 5.2 RPG, 6.4 APG, 1.4 SPG, and 0.5 BPG. Marks said the surgery will be arthroscopic.
We will have to wait for the 2020-2021 season to see the Kyrie Irving – Kevin Durant pairing, but the good news is that both should be fully healthy when that time comes.
As for the fantasy beneficiaries of the Kyrie Irving injury, look for Spencer Dinwiddie to be rhe starting point guard and keep his fantastic play, while Caris LeVert will see an increase in usage. In fact, he attempted 29 shots on Thursday: he could have a fantastic rest-of-the-season as the Nets try to hold on to a playoff spot. Joe Harris and Taurean Prince will also see a slight increase in minutes.
Ailment: Fractured left wrist
Diagnosed: February 21
Expected return: Out for the next two weeks, probably longer
Fantasy benefactors: Naz Reid
Like Kyrie Irving, KAT is kind of a regular here at The Doctor’s Room, sadly. Evaluation on his left wrist confirmed a fracture, and the star Minnesota Timberwolves center will miss, at the very least, the next two weeks. It’s possible that his absence extends after that period passes.
The possibility exists that Towns is out for the season, but that hasn’t been confirmed and would depend on his progress over the next few weeks. Naz Reid will be unleashed after this news.
Towns was having another one of his trademark excellent fantasy seasons, with averages of 26.5 PPG, 3.3 3PM, 10.8 RPM, 4.4 APG, 0.9 SPG and 1.2 BPG.
Ailment: Sore right ankle
Diagnosed: February 20
Expected return: Next week
Fantasy benefactors: Frank Ntikilina and Dennis Smith
Enough of the season-ending NBA injuries. On to something that is hopefully a little blip on the screen. Payton missed yesterday’s game with his sore right ankle. The hope is that he doesn’t miss many games, and it remains a possibility that he returns for next week’s tilt against the Houston Rockets. His season averages are 9.7 PPG, 4.7 RPG, 6.9 APG and 1.7 SPG, but in the last 10 games, he shined to the tune of 12.8 PPG, 6.1 RPG, 9.5 APG and 2.4 SPG. Frank Ntikilina and Dennis Smith should pick up the slack if he is forced to miss more time.
Ailment: Torn ACL in left knee
Diagnosed: June 13, 2019
Expected return: Out for the season
Fantasy benefactors: Damion Lee
As you probably remember, Klay Thompson tore his ACL during last season’s NBA Finals. The Golden State Warriors’ owner, Joe Lacob, said on Tuesday that it was “possible” that Klay Thompson could return for the final games of the season. “Klay might come back for a few games at the end. He might not.” A couple of days later, on Thursday, Lacob turned down the possibility and declared the sharpshooting guard out for the season. After all, the Warriors are 12-44 and in last place in the Western Conference: they are doomed for the year and aren’t going anywhere. There is no need to risk Thompson. Damion Lee should continue to start at Thompson’s usual SG spot.
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